If you have an adopted child, especially a child of another race, this book is a "must have" on your bedtime bookshelf.
For years I've read this book to Jake until he declared it a "baby book" because of it's thick and sturdy pages. I couldn't part with it so I stashed it years ago.
I found it tonight, after not touching it for years, and wondered if he would even tolerate me reading it and if it would mean anything to him at this pre-pubescent, very aware, time of his life.
We took turns reading the pages. He giggled at the pictures as if he had never seen the book before. "A giraffe is not a bird's mommy!"
Could this really be novel? Was it really that long since we looked at it? Does his brain just process and purge, instantly?
Regardless, we finished the book and at the end, the little yellow bird calls a big fluffy bear "mother". The bear also happens to have an alligator and a pig as her children too!
I remarked that I loved this story because it makes me feel happy. "I like the hug and kiss at the end!" Jake exclaimed.
"Do mommies and kids need to look the same Jake?"
"What do mommies need to do?"
"Mommies keep you safe and Daddies are the super big protectors of both of us!"
"Ready for Thank You's?"
"Thank you God for my pretty mommy and strong daddy!"
So we strive and strive to help our kids to be "normal", right? Regardless of what your perception of "normal" really is, we want our kids to fit in, be accepted and be fun.
Jake has never taken to cartoon or animated shows on TV. We did a stint with Veggie Tales a while back but he's progressed (should we say)? He recently discovered "Impractical Jokers" on YouTube! (thanks by the way). I've watched a few episodes and nearly wet my pants laughing and Jake has been scream-laughing at the top of his lungs.
I didn't know what to do at first. I was loving the fact that he's "getting" the jokes. Then we had to start reminding him that what these 4 guys are doing is socially inappropriate, but yes totally hilarious. We all can laugh together and along the way he's learning new lingo.
When his echolalia kicks in, things get interesting!
Some times it shocks me, some times not. But every time I have to swallow my laughs until I start to sound like a snorting, gurgling animal gasping for air! The bigger the reaction, the more we will hear it. So we stifle at all cost.
So tonight, as Jake was tucked under his 4 blankets, head on his cheeseburger pillow and he started reciting his Thank You Gods and his I'm Sorry Gods.
"Thank you for my clipboard with the calculator, my new lamp, my teacher Ms. K I love her so much, Ms. B b/c she's great too, and mommy, daddy, and my other blessings. Oh yeah and I'm sorry for almost kicking the dog!"
OK, what happy dream are we going to find tonight Jake?
"I want to find the dream where I go into a NYC adult bar with my super cool clip board and talk to lots of adults and all the MILFS that will be there!"
Go ahead, try not to laugh!
As we journey full-speed ahead into puberty, we have no idea which child we are going to meet at the kitchen table every morning.
Will it be energetic Jake? Distracted Jake? Tired Jake? or Crabby Jake? It's an adventure for the entire family, and regardless of which personality is showing at the time, "OCD Jake" makes his presence known daily!
If you let it drive you crazy, it will, so I'm trying to embrace his uncontrollable need for order and control, which is how his OCD is presenting this week!
Yesterday was a snow day, many kids want to lay low, catch up on sleep, watch a movie, play on the computer... well Jake is not "many" or even "most" and we cleaned all day. Every time I turned around something was moved or "made prettier".
We started in the family room where he reorganized the book shelves and vacuumed. Then all the bedrooms got a make-over: vacuum, beds made, table straightened, hangars evenly spaced. The bedrooms alone took a good hour or so! The laundry needed to be put away, so there he goes... even sorted and re-folded.
Today, he informed Chris that we need to lose the table in the spare bedroom and make it a little more "acceptable" for guests. HA!
There could be worse problems, but I thought this would give you a chuckle. Enjoying my ride down the Fixation Freeway!
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